Ex-FIFA vice president is ‘Diamond of Asia’

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Ex-FIFA vice president is ‘Diamond of Asia’

Former FIFA Vice President Chung Mong-joon was named the latest recipient of the Asian Football Confederation’s Diamond of Asia award, the football governing body’s highest accolade.

The AFC said Monday that its executive committee decided to confer the award on the honorary president of the Korea Football Association, in recognition of his contributions to the development of Asian football.

“Dr. Chung played a key role in bringing the coveted FIFA World Cup to Asia for the first time in 2002 and was instrumental in showing Asian football the way to development and growth,” AFC President Shaikh Salman said in a statement.

“He also served in many FIFA and AFC standing committees and was deservedly appointed honorary vice-president of FIFA in 2011. His philanthropic activities toward helping football communities devastated by disasters in the continent are also well-known.”

Among his contributions, the AFC noted his $400,000 donation for rebuilding football infrastructure after devastating floods in Pakistan in 2010 and a $200,000 donation to the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI) to assist in relief efforts after an earthquake and tsunami the same year.

Chung, 61, is the ninth recipient of the annual award and the first from Korea. FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter also received the award in 2006.

Chung will receive the award during the AFC Annual Awards in Kuala Lumpur in November.

By Moon Gwang-lip

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